What drove a 29-year-old Colorado social studies teacher to jump from the classroom to the state Capitol | SummitDaily.com

What drove a 29-year-old Colorado social studies teacher to jump from the classroom to the state Capitol

The Steamboat Springs Democrat brings recent classroom experience to the Capitol as she hopes to improve teacher shortages, mental health support and school safety

Erica Breunlin
The Colorado Sun
Meghan Lukens, a Democrat, grew up in Steamboat Springs. Lukens, 29, who assumed office on Jan. 9, 2023, taught social studies for nearly eight years.
Olivia Sun/The Colorado Sun via Report for America

Last fall, about 25 Steamboat Springs high schoolers received an unexpected knock at the door. Standing in front of them upon opening it?

Their social studies teacher.

Meghan Lukens wasn’t there to confront her students about poor grades or attendance but instead to campaign for their families’ support in the race to represent Colorado House District 26.

Now, the 29-year-old teacher-turned-lawmaker has stepped outside her classroom to practice what she previously taught: how to write a bill and turn it into a law, how to find consensus amid controversy and how to represent constituents effectively at home and under the gold dome.

And as Lukens — who spent most of her childhood in Steamboat Springs and graduated from the same high school where she taught civics, world history and world geography — begins to sponsor legislation, she is advocating to prioritize issues that directly affected her as a rural educator. Her experiences with lack of affordable housing, teacher shortages and turnover, and inadequate education funding mean that she can help steer decisions about how education dollars are spent with a clear understanding of what schools and educators need.

Read the full story on ColoradoSun.com.

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